The sea and sky, light and wind—culture and life on the island
Experiencing the exceptional Setouchi Triennale, that sheds light on the land’s
Power of art transforms the island once again into a beautiful, vigorous island
Explore Setouchi Triennale that takes place once every 3 years
2019 is exactly the year in which the Setouchi Triennale takes place. It is divided into 3 terms—spring, summer and autumn. This year, the summer season is held from July 19th to August 25th, while the autumn season is held from September 28th to November 4th.
Numerous artworks of artists around the world will be exhibited both indoors and outdoors, around the 12 islands in the Setouchi Inland Sea and 2 major ports—Takamatsu Port and Uno Port. The exhibit is open for visitors to freely enjoy as they please. There are several ways to enjoy the event. For example, you could pick an art of your choice and visit a particular island or pay a visit a couple of times, discovering each island every time you come. Another option would be to stay a long period of time and view every artwork at your pace.
The artworks rage from large structures and sculptures to buildings that function as public toilets and old houses that serve as accommodations. Other forms of expression include lunch menus served at restaurants, dance & performances, drum performances and even tours that offer dinners that comes with films. Its art style is diverse, ranging from permanent exhibits to various events that take place on particular days.
Many art lovers and Setouchi Triennale fans visit the islands during the Setouchi Triennale. Since its launch in 2010, the event has dynamically developed into an opportunity for visitors to experience Setouchi’s culture and its people. General Director Flam Kitagawa says the motivation behind the event is to “deliver hope to Japan by art,” through artwork inspired by Setouchi Inland Sea. His challenge is indeed showing signs of progress.
Riding a ferry from Takamatsu Port to Shodoshima—a moment in which the sky and sea come together
The theme—“Restoring the Sea”
Artists’ sensitivities + Setouchi Inland Sea = The joy of encountering unique artworks
The artistic process begins when artists arrive at the island and take in the island’s characteristics, lifestyle, culture and history. Artists then choose a site, encounter its people and start creating their work. Some of the works that were created in past events are still exhibited. They evoke nostalgia with their changing forms as well as create pleasure for audiences who can experience them again.
The Setouchi Inland Sea is beautiful and gentle, healing those who set their eyes upon it. Nevertheless, the region is recently facing issues of environmental destruction, declining population not to mention fishery decline. That is why the theme of the Triennale is the “Restoration of the Sea.”
Islands afloat the calm Setouchi Inland Sea—a peaceful sight
The underlying concept of the event is to consider the situation of Shodoshima and the Setouchi Inland Sea, and stand by its people. The power of art that attracts artists and audiences to visit the region, no doubt lightens the island up. Urban dwellers who move to the area after being attracted to the region upon their visit, are on the increase.
Visitors are deeply moved by the art crafted by the artists who put all their efforts into creating them. They’re also healed by the land’s delicious food and relaxing atmosphere. Before their eyes lie the sea, the mountains, the light and the starry skies. It’s sure to remain in the souls of all who travel to the island as an unforgettable experience.
Art cultivates the inner self and guides people to discover what they truly like, what they are attracted to, what they find challenging and what they are inspired by.
The sea, sky, land and art
Witnessing the challenge of integrating with nature
Introducing some of the artworks that can be encountered in 2019
There are 11 areas in Shodoshima that exhibit art. The following are some of the works that were introduced during the spring season in April and May. They will be also be exhibited in the summer and autumn season for visitors to see.
*The Shore Where We Can Reach—Xiang Yang’s Art Sailing Proposal Xiang Yang
The first thing that enters your eyes upon arriving at Kusakabe Port—connecting Takamatsu and Shodoshima—is Xiang Yang’s outdoor artwork that puts together an old sailing boat and a stack of furniture.
When Xiang Yang was a child, he got on a fisherman’s sailing boat with his mother to search for his father. For Xiang Yang, a sailing boat is something that guides people to a peaceful bank. Beside the boat is a tower (or lighthouse) built with Chinese traditional furniture, which is breathtakingly beautiful. A sailing boat that takes people and other living things to a new land… The fact that it lies right beside a port makes it exceptionally inspiring.
*The Secret of Hanasuwajima Kana Kou
An artwork exhibited inside Shodoshima Furusato-mura at Mito Peninsula. Taking Hanasuwajima—an uninhabited island off the shore of Mito Peninsula—as its motif, the pictures capture the land and sea inside a 16-sided inverted cone. The artwork can be viewed from the top with a ladder or from the center at the bottom. The blue gradation is illusionary and beautiful.
*Shiomimi-so Toshimitu Ito + Kana Kou+ Hiroshima City University, Faculty of Arts
A sound collector in the shape of a horn echoes the sound of waves and boats in a wooden interior space. Exhibited on the beach of Mito Peninsula, the artwork is popular not only among adults but also children.
*Love in Shodoshima Wang Wen Chih (Taiwan)
An artwork that stands in the Nakayama district looking up at Senmaida. The huge dome-shaped sculpture is made of approximately 4,000 bamboos, which local people cooperated to collect. Upon entering the 15m-high dome, sunlight filters through the woven bamboos and people are seen lying on bamboo floors and reading books.
*Regent in Olives Hisakazu Shimizu (Japan)
Among the olive trees, stands an olive-shaped head topped by a regent hairstyle. Other than being a piece of art, it serves as an unattended sales booth, where vegetables and fruits are sometimes left in hollow areas of the face. There are regent hairstyle wigs close to the artwork, allowing visitors to take pictures with regent hairstyles.
Since the late 1980s, Benesse Art Site Naoshima/Benesse Holdings and Public Interest Incorporated Association Fukutake Foundation has been initiating unique artistic activities with Naoshima. In 2013, it renovated Shodoshima Town Fukuda Elementary School and created “Fukutake House” to develop projects to deepen mutual understanding between Fukuda region and Asian partners. In 2019, the “Asia Gallery”—refurbished by architect Ryue Nishizawa—has opened on the second floor of the school building and has been converted into a gallery space. Now, it exhibits Asian collection owned by Benesse Art Site Naoshima, including Asian contemporary artworks from the Benesse Award which was recently developed at the Singapore Biennale, as well as Asian modern art that is attracting world attention. There’s also “Fukuda Asia Restaurant” that bonds Asian partners, local people and visitors with food.
The main entrance of Fukutake House. “Sahabat Alam/Friend of Nature” by Indonesian artist indieguerillas welcomes visitors. The elementary school building has been refurbished in modern style, while leaving its former appearance.
“The Odyssey of Heridonology” by Indonesian artist Heri Dono exhibited on the 2nd floor.
Fukutake House http://benesse-artsite.jp/art/fukutakehouse.html
Setouchi Triennale 2019
The theme is the “Restoration of the Sea.” The event lasts for 107 days during 3 seasons of spring, summer and autumn. Locations for the event: 12 islands of the Setouchi Inland Sea + Takamatsu Port (Kagawa Prefecture) and Uno Port (Okayama Prefecture). Locations in Honjima, Takamijima, Awashima and Ibukijima are only open during the autumn season.
April 26 (Fri) to May 26 (Sun) finished
July 19 (Fri) to August 25 (Sun) (38 days)
September 28 (Sat) to November 4 (Mon) (38 days)
＜Coverage cooperation: Shodoshima Town Office＞